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that my colleague from oregon was discussing earlier. that if you have a phrase in the law and it's been interpreted by a secret court and the interpretation is secret, then you really don't know what the law means. the fisa court is a judicial body established by congress to consider requests for surveillance made under the fisa amendments act, but almost without exception, it's decisions including significant legal interpretations of the statute remain highly classified. they remain secret. i'm going to put up this chart just to emphasize that this is a big deal. here in america, if the law makes a reference to what the boundary is, we should understand so it can be debated. if the court reaches an interpretation that congress is uncomfortable, we should change that. but of course we can't change that not knowing what the interpretation is because the interpretation is secret. so we are certainly constrained from having the type of debate that our nation was founded on, an open discussion of issues. now, these are issues that can be addressed without in any way compromising the nationa
in relation to amendment number 3435, offered by the senator from oregon, mr. merkley. mr. reid: mr. president? mr. president? could we have order. the presiding officer: yes. order, please. mr. merkley: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from oregon. mr. reid: mr. president? the presiding officer: and, please. mr. reid: mr. president, we're going to have two more votes tonight. they will both be ten minutes in duration, in addition to the debate time that's already been established. then we're going to move in a very direct way to complete as much of the debate time on the amendments on the supplemental. it's extremely important we get this debate completed tonight so we can start voting in the morning. we have already set up, we're going to have some votes in the morning. we're going to come in probably about 9:30 and start voting. we have a lot to do. it would really be good if people who have amendments on the supplemental, use your debate time tonight. we're going to have no more votes tonight but tomorrow there's going to be limited amount of debate time. so senators -- se
, and his wife kendra, who are in oregon where they have a small farm tawld tipping tree farm. we wish they could be here today, our grandson carter, who is a proud member of the university of oregon marching band, the ducks, who served as an intern for me -- not at government expense, by the way, that was at our expense. and our little dog dakota, who has become sort of a mascot of the united states senate. brian williams when he did a show on a day in the life of senate concluded that program by calling dakota the 101st senator. and, you know, i think he will be missed perhaps more than i am as i leave the senate. in 1964 i came here, i sat up in the gallery, in fact, it was the gallery right up here. and i was 16 years old. and i watched a debate in the united states senate. it was on civil rights. hubert humphrey was leading that debate. and it so inspired me that i thought, you know, someday i'd like to be down on that floor and i would like to debate the great issues of the day and i would like to represent the people of north dakota. and so i went home and wrote out on the back
, the senator from oregon, mr. wiendz, is -- mr. wyden, is recognized. bliend: thank you. i thank leader reid for the honor of being able to open this morning's debate and i want to particularly identify with a point that the leader made that there's an old saying that most of life is just showing up, and i think what the american people want, and i heard this at checkout lines in our local stores, for example, this week, they want everybody back in washington and going to work on this issue just as the leader suggested. i think senators know that i'm really a charter member of what i guess you could call the optimist caucus here in the senate, and as improbable as some of these talkingheads say on tv, i still think we ought to be here just as the leader said working on this issue because the consequences -- mr. reid: mr. president, would my friend yield for a question? mr. wyden: i will be happy to. mr. reid: the distinguished senator from oregon and i served together in the house of representatives. do you remember the days when the house voted as a body, not a majority of the majority, but
program of this kind. passenger rail and our states of oregon and washington has been in place since 1994 where we have partnered from the state level with amtrak, and in our state, burlington northern santa fe, in a collaborative approach to an incremental delivery of high and higher speed rail programs and service. so as we've been investing over the years, we see the implementation in the creation of a national vision as a very important part of what we are trying to deliver. we have a 460-mile corridor between eugene, oregon, and vancouver, british columbia. we have achieved in the last year up to 850 passengers, 50,000 passengers, and our growth is increasing year over year in the 10% rate. we have in our state invested over $480 million in capital and operations in amtrak cascades, which is what we call our program. but it wasn't until the recovery act came that we're able to make significant capital infrastructure improvements on the rail itself. sightings, double tracking, positive train control, all those amenities that will benefit high and higher speed rail, and more frequent s
: the senator from oregon. mr. merkley: i ask the quorum call be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. merkley: thank you, mr. president. i rise for a few moments to share a few thoughts about our friend and colleague who passed away yesterday, senator dan inouye. it was a shock to be here on the floor yesterday when his passing was announced. and it's still a shock today to see that it is, indeed, real, the beautiful bowl of white roses on his desk. and i wanted to share just a remembrance or two. when i was 19, i was struggling with what direction to take in life. and thought public policy might be something worth pursuing. so i asked my father, i said -- my father read the newspaper every day and would sit and watch the evening news and run a commentary on the world. and i asked him, if i was to try to get a summer internship in washington, d.c. to see how government really works, who should i apply to? and, of course, he noted that i should apply to my home state senator, senator packwood and senator hatfield. and i asked him if there were any national senators who s
from oregon is on the floor also. as we talk about the deficit, it has taken center stage right now, we want to highlight one very clear thing -- social security has not contributed, is not part of and never will contribute to the deficit. so those that like to mettle in it and way to combine it into this deficit talk are just playing games with our seniors and disabled in this country. it is a separate issue. it is not impacting the federal deficit and it should be not -- and i know some like to meld it in because they want to talk about cuts, and their favorite line is privatize, which really means seniors and disabled get a lot less in the future. they will not get the guarantee that they paid into. also, i want to give credit to congressman ted deutsch who has a similar measure on the house side. both of our plans we know may be difficult to pass but we're going to continue to push forward on it. we won't be alone. a coalition of over 300 national and state organizations have already endorsed our bill. together, they represent 50 million americans. they are on board because this bil
capital. for example, home forward, known as the portland housing authority in portland, oregon, used project-based vouchers to provide houses to formally homeless veterans served by a service coordinator and services provided by the va program. flexibility allows home forward to provide security deposits to veterans using housing vouchers as well. the department has some of the most important stake holders from public housing authorities and advocacy communities able to negotiate through differences over mtw in order to advance broader section 8 reform. as the community crafts legislation, we hope you consider the stake holder approach. mr. chairman, there is an irrefutable need for rental assistance in the nation. at the same time, there is long standing consensus on a set of reforms that will streamline and simply administration of the voucher system and housing program. hud is committed to improving not just the administration of the programs, but its oversight of the public housing programs as well, and we look forward to working with the committee and industry partners to devel
private exam. for example home forward the portland housing authority, in portland oregon, used vouchers for homeless veterans, and the building is served by a full-time residences coordinator and serviced provided by the va program. flex the allows home forward to provide security deposits using housing vouchers as well. the department is pleased some of the most important stake holders from public housing authorities and low income housing advocacy communities were able to negotiate through the difference over mtw in order to advance broader section 8 reform. at z community crafts its legislation, we hope you consider the stake holder approach. mr. chairman, there is an irrefutable need for assistance and communities across the nation. at the same time there is long standing consensus on a set of reforms that streamline and simplify administration of the housing choice voucher and public housing program. hud's committed to not improving just the administration of the programs but its oversight of the public ho
towrntion connecticut, you a rohr a, colorado, oak creek, which is, which and portland, oregon. these were just fairly recently, mr. president. as president obama said last night, no one law can erase evil, no policy can prevent a determined madman from committing a senseless act of violence. but we need to accept the reality that we're not doing enough to protect our citizens. in the coming days and weeks we'll engage in a meaningful conversation and thoughtful debate about how to change laws in culture that allow this violence to continue to grow. we have no greater responsibility than keeping our most vulnerable and most precious resource -- our children -- safe. and every idea should be on the table as we discuss how best to do just that. mr. president, today we have an opportunity, as i mentioned a little bit earler, to pull together to help the citizens of new york, new jersey, and other parts of the northeast as they recover from the damn of hurricane van dihurricane sandy. as we did before, we have an opportunity to help maim make families and communities whole again. i hope my col
, washington, oregon, california, hawaii has been threatened by hundreds of thousands of tons of debris washing ashore from the tragic tsunami in japan nearly two years ago. that's why this legislation asks noaa to take a closer look at the tsunami debris and make sure we are putting an accurate assessment and risk in place to protect the west coast. if they decide that it is a severe marine debris event, then they will need to present a specific coordination plan developed to meet that threat and work with local governments, counties and tribes and to make sure that there is a coordinated effort to protect our economy and environment from tsunami debris. we know in the northwest because we have already seen ships, we have seen bridges, we have seen various parts float ashore, oftentimes local communities having to share the burden and expense of cleaning up the tsunami debris. with over 165,000 jobs and nearly $11 billion in our coastal economy from fishing to tourism to various activities, we want to make sure that tsunami debris does not hurt our coastal economies. all you need to do is ask
in provision regarding teachers home offices, something every teacher in oregon was writing us about it seemed. we debated these issues. we decided these issues, and it was a simple majority. that's the way the senate deliberated and decided issues over our history until the last 40 years when this massive, massive expansion of the use of the objection to simple majority has paralyzed this body. i thought that it was interesting to see this cartoon. it says "i'll tell you all the reasons we shouldn't reform the filibuster." i assume it's depicting a senator on the floor of the senate. number one, it could restrict my ability to frivolously stymie everything. then the senator says number two, -- well, the senator thinks about it, grimaces, frowns, can't think of any other reason that we shouldn't reform the filibuster other than the ability to frivolously stymie everything. and then finally the senator says how long do i have to keep talking? and little partner down here says you could read recipes for paralysis. well, that's what we have. that's what we have in the u.n. senate right with -- u.
. these i.d.'s limiting the early voting. states like oregon and others have figured out you can vote by mail without fraud. you can have the opportunities to vote extended in early voting and absentee voting and give people their voice in this democracy. if we want to restore the confidence -ftd american -- of e american people in our government we've got to give them the right to vote on election day. standing in line for seven hours is embarrassing in every state it happens. i know the tradition. state laws determine election standards. that's the way it goes. but when it comes to federal elections, reef a voice in the -- we have a voice in the process and we've got to make sure we come together on a bipartisan basis to deal with it. i'm pleased chairman leahy and i are going to be able to work together to hold a hearing in the full judiciary committee next wednesday, december 19, to continue to explore this issue, and then into the new congress we'll be proposing specific legislation to deal with this issue. though another election season may have ended, our work to perfect or uni
. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from oregon is recognized. mr. merkley: i ask for regular order with respect to my amendment, 3367. the presiding officer: the amendment is now pending. mr. merkley: i have a modification at the desk and a ask my amendment be so modified. the presiding officer: the amendment is so modified. mr. merkley: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent to add senator franken, senator tim johnson, and senator tom udall as cosponsors to the amendment. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. merkley: thank you, mr. president. i yield the floor. mr. leahy: mr. president, i suggest the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call: a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from oklahoma is recognized. mr. inhofe: mr. president, i ask unanimous consent the quorum call in progress be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. inhofe: it's my understanding at 4:00 senator durbin from illinois will be speaking and i ask unanimous consent i be allowed to speak at the conclu
by the senator from oregon, mr. merkley. ms. mikulski: mr. president, the senate is not in order. we need to hear the gentleman offering the amendment. the presiding officer: the senator is correct. the senate should be in order. would senators please take their conversations off the floor. would senators please clear the well and take their conversations off the floor. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from oregon is recognized. mr. merkley: mr. president, i'm delighted to partner with senator blunt and senator stabenow on this important amendment which addresses the disasters that occurred this last summer in terms of the centuries -- a century's worth, the worst fires and the worst drought. this is a true emergency in which our response has been delayed because of programs that are tied up in the farm bill. i reserve the balance of my time but ask colleagues let's address this real emergency. mr. sessions: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from alabama is recognized. mr. sessions: this amendment -- and i respect my colleague's desire to get this matte
: the senator from oregon. mr. wyden: i ask unanimous consent to vacate the quorum call -- we're not in a quorum call. i ask unanimous consent to call up my amendment which is at the desk. the presiding officer: without objection. the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: the senator from oregon, mr. wyden for himself and others proposes amendment numbered 3439. at the end, add ad the following, section 5, report on the impact of the fisa amendments act of -- mr. wyden: i ask unanimous consent the amendment be considered as read. the presiding officer: without objection, so ordered. under the previous order, there will be 30 minutes of debate, equally divided prior to the vote on the wyden amendment. mr. wyden: mr. president, given the events of yesterday, this is the last opportunity for the next five years for the congress to exercise a modest measure of real oversight over this intelligence surveillance law. here's why: colleagues, it is not real oversight when the united states congress cannot get a yes or no answer to the question of whether an estimate currently exists as to whether
oregon. mr. wyden: mr. president, both sides are working on an agreement to approve the intelligence authorization bill for 2013 by unanimous consent. i voted against this legislation when it was marked up in committee. i objected to it here on the floor last month. but i am able to support it at this time. the bill has a number of valuable provisions in it and i thank chairwoman feinstein and vice chairman chambliss for making the changes in the bill to address my concerns. the changes that senators feinstein and chambliss have made would remove a number of provisions that were intended to reduce unauthorized disclosures of classified information of course known as leaks. i objected to these provisions because, in my view, they would have harmed first amendment rights, led to less-informed public debate about national security issues, and undermined the due process rights of intelligence agency employees without actually enhancing national security. i'm going to take just a few minutes to explain my views on this so that those who are not on the intelligence committee and who have n
Search Results 0 to 16 of about 17

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